Posted tagged ‘grass’

“Green grass is Happy grass.”

June 8, 2018

richI saw lots of sun and hoped it was warm, but the breeze makes the day cooler than I expected. It is only 65˚. The high will be 71˚, and it will go back to the 50’s tonight. I’m still hoping the predicted heat wave will make an appearance, maybe tomorrow.

Skip, my factotum, is here and has a long list of chores ranging from replacing fence posts to cleaning deck furniture. When Skip is done, everything will be ready for the warm days of summer.

When I was a kid, our house had only a small front garden. It was anchored by bushes, and the flowers had to be planted around the bushes. My father was a perfunctory gardener. He planted geraniums and pansies, all of one in the back and all of the other in front. But my father was a master when it came to his grass, his front lawn. That square plot of green got all the attention and care the flowers never did. He mowed and fertilized and watered that patch of grass. I remember it was always lush and green. He allowed but didn’t like the kiddy pool as it squashed the blades of grass. He always yelled when I rode my bike down the small grass hill which bordered the sidewalk. He could see the tire tracks.

My father used a hand push mower and a hand trimmer which sort of looked like scissors. The trimmer clicked and the mower whirred, the two sounds of summer I most remember from my childhoodI . My father never went to a power mower. He did go to electric trimmers, a Father’s Day gift from me.

I can remember summer weekends visiting my parents. My father always gave me a guided tour of his yard. On Saturday I’d sit on the front steps while he mowed. He went back and forth in rows, never deviating from that pattern. When he was finished, he’d ask me how it looked. I always told him the lawn was beautiful. He never said anything but he did smile.

“And falling’s just another way to fly.”

November 23, 2015

Okay, it has been a while so no be careful and take precautions sermonizing. I admit it: I fell this morning. It was on my brick walkway as I was going to get the papers. I was wearing my soled slippers when all of a sudden I moved and my foot didn’t; instead, I went down. It was amazing as I could see the brick getting closer and closer then down I went. Luckily I wasn’t wearing my glasses as they are my last pair. The other pair was destroyed by a fall which occurred in the same way: I go forward, my foot stays behind. As soon as I hit the bricks, I howled in pain then rolled over to the grass. If I’m going to be in pain, it might as well be on the soft grass and not the hard bricks. I stayed there a bit until I could get myself up as only one hand was available. I made it upright, but my hand really hurt so I sort of had to cradle it with the other hand. I got back inside and made coffee, all with one hand. I then took the top off the fake sugar jar, dropped it and it broke. I didn’t curse when I fell but the broken cover elicited a barrage of blue language.

I sat down, drank my coffee and read a bit of the paper then I had to go over to my neighbor’s as on Mondays she and I go over the citizenship questions. If I have to repeat three branches of the government one more time, I will not be responsible for my actions.

The whole time I was there my hand was resting in ice as it had swollen quite a bit on one side, the one I used to try to catch myself, a ploy which didn’t work too well.

I am a two fingered typist who is now a one figured typist so this will be a short entry today. My finger is exhausted.

My left hand and wrist look disfigured. The small finger side is massively swollen, but I was lucky yet again: no broken bones. I didn’t fall gracefully but I did fall safely in some strange way.

“Is the spring coming?” he said. “What is it like?”… “It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine…”

March 6, 2014

I could see my lawn yesterday morning. It was a touch of green in a grey world then it snowed, and my lawn disappeared. I wanted to scream. I think maybe I should have.

Last night was cold, really cold. On the news at 11, the weatherman said this is the coldest start to March in history. The paper this morning described tomorrow’s weather as becoming mild with temperatures from 37˚to 40˚. Mild?  In what world is 37˚ to 40˚ mild?This morning we have sun, but we also have snow showers. I went and filled the bird feeders off the deck. It took fewer than ten minutes. My hands were freezing when I was done.

It struck me as funny, the wording, though the incident isn’t funny at all. A man sawed off his thumb yesterday, but the weather precluded the use of MedFlight. The man and his thumb were taken by ambulance to Boston.

Yesterday I was busy in the kitchen. My friends and I always watch The Amazing Race together but last Sunday I stayed home and watched the Academy Awards instead. We DVR’ed the race so last night was race night. We have a weekly tradition. We take turns making appetizers and desserts and play games before the race. We play Phase 10, a card game, and Sorry, the best game we know. I’ve been playing it since I was a kid, and I introduced it to friends who now love the game or hate it depending upon what happens. It is often cause for cursing, something I never did as a kid but probably wanted to but didn’t dare.

To get the food ready for the games, I spent a good part of the day chopping, slicing and mixing. It was my turn for appetizers. I made pineapple salsa, fried ravioli and quesadillas. They were all delicious, but the salsa with the quesadillas was spectacular, says I the chef. I used a red, yellow and green pepper, onion and some cumin fried together, mixed three different cheeses then used it all to fill the quesadillas which were then baked. I was a chopping maniac for the pineapple salsa. It had fresh pineapple, a tomato, red onion, a jalapeño pepper and chopped parsley. It was worth the effort and the backache.

The salsa and quesadillas are now on the list of foods for summer if it ever comes.

“The whole point of the week is the weekend.”

May 25, 2013

Last night I again fell asleep to the sound of the rain, but it was far gentler than the torrential rain of the night before so I didn’t need to shut my window. The rain has left the day chilly and damp. More rain is expected later. My grass has grown to such a monumental height several snakes could be hiding in it.

I need to get out of the house. It has been two days of staying home and watching bad movies, really bad movies, all the way through to the end. The worst by far was Dino Wolf. The plot was simple: human DNA was mixed with a prehistoric dire wolf skeleton and resulted in a hybrid monster with a taste for human flesh. The monster was the best actor in the movie, and it had no lines, just a lot of snarling and grunting. I sort of recognized one of the human actors but couldn’t come up with his name. It was Gil Gerard. I’d fire my agent if I were Gil.

I have a high tolerance for bad movies. They make me laugh. My sister Moe shares the same fondness for B movies. Each Christmas we try to out-do each other in finding and gifting the worst movie. Last year I gave her The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra, a favorite of mine, and the year before I gave her the Christmas movie Santa Claus made in 1959 in Mexico. Santa lives in outer space and is helped by Merlin. He goes to Earth and must defeat the devil who is bothering poor little Lupita. My sister has been out-done the last two years. I think nothing will ever be worse than Santa Claus. In the comment section I’ll leave the link to YouTube and the movie. I watched it all the way through when I bought it. I wanted to see if Santa would win!

The bridges are filled with on-coming cars this morning. I have no idea why. The weather is supposed to be bad today and tomorrow, but it seems the weekenders are not deterred. Next door, at the rental, there are two cars from New York. They come every year for this weekend and usually sit on the deck and party a bit, but they won’t this year. As for me, I’m staying off the main roads. They’ll be clogged with people looking for something to do. Gracie and I will meander on the side roads with no destination in mind. It’s the meandering we want.

“We may sit in our library and yet be in all quarters of the earth.”

April 8, 2013

The day is a delight with sunny skies and a temperature in the high 50’s. Gracie has been out all morning. I will join her in a bit as the feeders need filling, and I need sun.

Today I am tired and bored. Nothing piques my interest. New books on my iPad are just waiting to be read, but I’m not in the mood. I have to go to Hyannis this afternoon for a Cat scan on my back, and I’m bemoaning the trek as if I have a continent to cross. The Red Sox have their home opener at 2, and I will probably watch the festivities. This is unusual for me, this bout of ennui.

The dog woke me up this morning with her intruder bark. I opened the front door and saw my landscaper fertilizing the lawn. We chatted a little bit about the moss which is taking over for a part of the grass. He says he’ll take care of it. I have a feeling I hit the highlight of my day, a conversation about moss. Later I got to thinking how I opened the door without a second thought. If I were the throw away character in a horror movie, a creature would have been in the yard hunting for breakfast. I’d run screaming and Gracie would bark. I’d get eaten and she’d survive by running out the back door. Good thing it was my landscaper.

I’ve concluded my mood comes from my back being painful and from my travel addiction. I can’t seem to solve either one. The back started a couple of weeks ago, and I moan and groan a lot from the pain. The doctor is doing his best, but I suspect nothing will change. I’ll just have to moan a bit more quietly. As for the travel addiction, I have no plans to travel this year. The bank needs to be replenished. Two trips to Ghana were expensive so this is a year to save for the next trip. I’m thinking maybe a weekend somewhere might be in order, but even that could be a bank breaker. Maybe I’ll sit on the deck with posters of the world pinned to the wall, and I’ll pretend I’m on an ocean liner. Every drink will have an umbrella. I’m just going to have to find a cabana boy!


“Where we love is home – home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts.”

March 29, 2012

The weather prediction is for cloudy and maybe rainy through Sunday. A couple of sunless days don’t bother me, but a string of them makes me lethargic. I loll around the house with little ambition. A sunny day gets me active and the floors get washed, the cabinets cleaned and the world looks to be a better place. Later, I’ll drag myself upstairs to shower and make my bed. They will give me some small sense of accomplishment.

We lived in what was called the project. The houses were wooden duplexes, not brick and not high-rises, and there were eleven or twelve of them on Prospect Street and up the hill around a small rotary which made the street a circle. Each side of the duplexes mirrored the other side. We had a kitchen, living room and three bedrooms. The cellar was huge, and it was where we often played and where we stored our bikes and where my mother’s washing machine stood. The big, black oil tank was against the wall on one side. I don’t remember where the furnace was. All the backyards faced each other, and all of them had below ground garbage bins with metal tops right beside the stairs and lines for laundry, three for each family. I have the memory of white sheets blowing on those lines. My mother had one of those hanging cloth clothespin bags. She moved it down each line as she hung the laundry. The backdoor was wooden, and it always slammed in the winter when the storm windows were on it. Our house was white with green trim, all of the houses were. My father kept care of his lawn and the front flower garden beside the stairs. A giant grassy hill stretched across the backyard and separated us from the duplexes on the top of it. Each of the fathers in all the duplexes facing the hill mowed his part of the grass on the hill. We used to roll down the hill so we’d get dizzy.  I remember a slip and slide one summer that everyone used.

Only families with children could live in the duplexes and one parent had to be a veteran. We moved to our first duplex, one with two bedrooms, in 1951. We had lived in the city, in a high-rise brick apartment building. After my sister was born, we were granted a larger duplex, and we moved down the hill from 37 Washington Ave to 16, and that’s where we stayed until 1964. All of my childhood memories were made on Washington Ave.

“To the illumined man or woman, a clod of dirt, a stone, and gold are the same.”

April 24, 2010

The sun is out, but this time of year it’s not yet strong enough to dispel the evening chill. The days get only as high as the 50’s and hover there. I have a window open in my bedroom, and it’s chilly at night, but I snuggle under the covers, and every morning I wake to the songs of birds.

The front lawn got cut the morning. It was tall and thick and deep green. Afterwards, I could smell cut grass from the deck where I was standing. I think it one of the best of all smells. It conjures memories. It brings to mind summer and warmth and rolling down grassy hills. I remember the click clack of the hand mower as my father cut his lawn and the feel of soft grass between my toes when I ran through the sprinkler. If the lawn needs mowing, summer can’t be so far away.

I think the amount of dirt you can tolerate is in direct proportion to your age. The dirtier you are, the younger you must be. When I was really little, a mud puddle was about the best place to play. My hands and clothes always got filthy, and I still remember the stiffness of my fingers covered in dried mud. It was fun. When I was older and riding my bike, I never cared about scuffs on my sneakers or grease from the chain on my pant legs. It was the joy of the ride which was all important.

Puberty brought a keen awareness of looks and clothes. I’d rather have thrown away a stained blouse than wear it. Sweaters back then were sometimes less a fashion statement than a cover-up. My white sneakers had to be pearly. The standard was high.

I still maintain a pristine look in public, but it’s getting harder, and I’m starting to care less.  I travel nowhere without my Tide pen. It is in my bag and a back-up is in the car. My Tide pen has saved blouses and shirts from the rag pile. It makes me look good. I don’t need to bring a sweater. The stains miraculously disappear.

At home, though, it’s a different story. I wear sweatshirts with stains and even a few ratty holes. Who cares? It’s just me.